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Whether you’re traveling with kids or adults, Whitefish Mountain Resort should be a no brainer when planning your trip to Whitefish, Montana. I would never think to visit a ski resort during the summer, but now I’ve learned that they don’t all shut down until the next snowfall. This resort has so much to offer whether or not there’s a few feet of snow on the ground, so be sure to add it to your itinerary whenever you’re in the area.
How to get to Whitefish Mountain Resort
If you fly into Glacier International Airport then you’re in luck because you’re just 19 miles away from the resort.
I highly recommend renting a car during your visit as there is not only much to see and do in the Whitefish area, but the surrounding towns as well. Here’s how I find car rentals for as little as $4 a day. Price your rental here.
If you opt to use car share services or your travel buddies take the car for the day, you still can get to the resort! The S.N.O.W. bus stops at various lodges and establishments and offers transportation (free during the winter) to both Downtown Whitefish and the resort.
Additionally, the Whitefish Shuttle is a great option for those looking to go to other hot spots such as Glacier National Park or hiking/biking trails.
How much time do you need?
I spent about five hours at Whitefish Mountain Resort and even that was a little rushed. It’s so easy to spend a half day here but if you want to try more activities than I did, you’ll need a full day.
If you plan to visit the resort several times during your stay, that may give you more time to do things elsewhere. Break your visit up into at least two days if you can.
Where should you stay?
You can check out their lodging options here or opt to stay off of the property.
Kandahar Lodge is located directly on Whitefish Mountain and just a short drive to the resort. I wrote about my experience at the lodge here or you can directly book your stay. According to Google Maps, it’s a five minute walk or a one minute drive in favorable weather conditions.
I also had the pleasure of staying at the Pine Lodge on Whitefish Lake. The drive from the lodge to the resort is less than 20 minutes and will give you the chance to add additional activities to your itinerary as the hotel offers free bike, kayak, and canoe rentals.
1. Aerial Adventure Park
This is an activity that I hope you throw yourself into versus talk yourself out of it. The Aerial Adventure Park at Whitefish Mountain Resort is an obstacle course that you complete while suspended in the air. The have five courses and over 60 obstacles.
Is it easy? Honestly, no. But it isn’t necessarily always difficult! Some courses are made to be harder than others and some obstacles are definitely harder than others. You can enjoy an obstacle that requires you to simply zipline from one platform to the next, but to get to that easy part you must first balance yourself on a thin wire and maneuver yourself around wooden blockades. See what I mean?
The Aerial Adventure Park was my favorite activity because it required me to get out of my comfort zone and use my noggin. 12/10 would recommend.
2. Zip Lining
It’s very hard to pass up six zip lines that span 1,900 ft, so don’t put yourself through that. Take a zip line tour that allows you to glide 300 feet above the forest floor and thank me later.
I recommend booking the six line tour and lucky for you, it all starts with a line named “Easy Come, Easy Go.” The lines get more exhilarating as you go and one of the best parts is that there’s some hiking involved. Everyone won’t be too thrilled about that, but I am.
3. Summit Big Mountain In A Gondola
You can take a gondola OR a lift to the top of Big Mountain just for the experience. It’s a fun and serene ride but it is also an effortless way to get some great shots!
I was able to photograph a hawk that sat atop a tree from the time I first went up the mountain until I came back down. It wasn’t until I was editing my photos that I realized how great of a shot I got.
We also heard there was a bear in the area on our way down but we weren’t lucky enough to spot it from above.
If you happen to be riding with a local or know the area yourself, this is also an amazing way to see the surrounding areas. There are so many lakes and mountains in the neighborhood that I just enjoyed others pointing them out to me or asking questions.
4. Have Lunch Atop Big Mountain
If you spend the first part of your day at the base of the mountain then you’re sure to work up an appetite. The Summit House, at the top of Big Mountain, is the perfect place to have a drink and bite to eat before getting back to the fun.
After getting some shots of the 360 degree views post gondola ride, I opted for an IPA, wings, and a salad. Do me a favor and don’t be like me. Let yourself enjoy some fries.
This restaurant offers plenty more food and cocktails to satiate your appetite.
5. Mountain Biking
Don’t worry, you don’t have to ride your bike up the mountain in order to enjoy the ride down. There are lifts specifically for that!
Biking is not only a seemingly effortless way to exercise, but it’s also a great way to explore the resort in a way that most others don’t take the time to. You’re not in a lift above the trees and you’re not on foot and limited to how far and fast you can go.
Whitefish Mountain Resort has over 30 miles of trails that range in difficulty, so this is a great activity for children too. You can purchase your bike park tickets here.
6. Go Hiking
Hiking is the one thing I really wish I had time for during my visit to the resort but it’s all the more reason to go back. Whitefish Mountain Resort has many trails at differing elevations for you to choose from. Try just one trail or several.
You can make a day out of hiking these trails or just spend some time picking huckleberries and nature-spotting. It’s all up to you.
7. Ride the Alpine Slides
The Alpine Slides were the perfect end to my day at Whitefish Mountain Resort and if you watched my video above, you’ll see me grinning ear to ear like a kid.
This is really the perfect place to unleash your inner child without judgement.
There are currently two slides that start and end in the same vicinity of each other. You get two different scenic views and slightly different rides on each. One is said to go faster than the other so if you’re only interested in riding one, ask before hand which is which.
If you’re hesitant to try this activity, keep in my that you control how slow or fast you go. And go for it!